Arreola begins his second career

By Tom Donelson, BASN Staff Reporter
Updated: January 29, 2011

IOWA CITY (BASN) — Friday night on ESPN, Chris Arreola had much to prove and his fight with Joey Abell was the first salvo of reviving his career.

As for the fight itself, all of Arreola’s strengths and weaknesses were displayed over a rapid two minute bout. In the middle of the round, Abell managed to nail Arreola with some solid combinations, demonstrating that he is still easy to hit.

As for the strengths, Arreola showed that near the end of the fight as he nailed Abell with a perfect right hand that sent him reeling into the rope and followed with a effective combination that had Abell helpless on the rope.

Abell holding on to the rope prevented him from going down but there was no doubt, he was in trouble. The referee stepped in to prevent further damage and Arreola had his first round knockout.

It is hard to say what this fight proved.

Abell, like Arreola, had 10 first round knockouts going into the fight and 26 stoppages in 27 victories but much of his competition were weaker when contrasted with Arreola.

Having fought on the Midwest circuit, the native Minnesotan fighter found himself fighting higher level of competition that he was used to and Abell was not ready for primetime.

Arreola did what he needed to do when faced with an inferior opponent, knock his opponent out quickly. As for Arreola, he came into the fight slightly under 250 pounds, the first time that has happened in nearly three years.

The real key for Arreola is how he builds on this victory. Abell was not a top ten heavyweight, much less a top twenty, so it is hard to say if Arreola had turned the corner or simply overwhelmed a inferior opponent with an inflated record.

For Arreola, his career has taken a tumbled as he now fighting on ESPN as a means to get back to the HBO and Showtime venues. The real test comes when Arreola fights a real contender but right now, he is merely trying to keep his career from further slippage.


Shawn Estrada fought another Minnesota product — Jon Schmitt. Like his fellow Midwestern fighter, Abell, Schmitt had a record that looked gaudy but mostly against week competition.

Estrada simply knocked Schmitt down three times and that was that. Estrada has yet make a big jump in competition and this fight simply showed, he can splattered weak competition but consistently facing weak competition doesn’t prepare you for the long movement into contender status.

The most intriguing fight of night was the quick handed and undefeated Mike Dallas facing the rugged Jose Lopez. Dallas advantage was his quick hands and when he kept the fight in the middle of the ring, he nailed Lopez with solid shots.

Lopez pressured Dallas and in the third round, he trapped the young fighter on the rope consistently. When trapped on the rope, Dallas could not effectively punch off the rope. This was shown in the third round and in subsequent rounds after that.

For most of the fight, Dallas would start the round quickly with quick combinations in an attempt to set the pace and distance but by the end of the round, Lopez often forced Dallas to the rope where he unleashed body shots to go with head shots.

Going into the seventh round, Dallas foot movement slowed down and his quick hands were just little less quicker due to Lopez’s pressure tactics; tactics that tired the young fighter.

Another negative for Dallas, his punches had little impact on Lopez whereas Lopez punches impacted the young boxer. Lopez broke Dallas down and in the seventh round, a flurry started by a left hook ended the fight as the referee stopped it after a five punch combination which sent Dallas reeling and defenseless.

The key to the fight occurred in the early rounds as Dallas connected on solid shots but they had no effect on Lopez. From the early rounds, Lopez knew that Dallas couldn’t hurt him but Lopez could hurt Dallas.

Dallas fought his first contender and found that his power punches weren’t enough to keep a pressure fighter off him. From this point in his career, Dallas must developed a more powerful punch or his career will end without him become a contender for the title.